Eric Deggans http://publicradioeast.org en Appreciating James Garner: TV's Best Unhero http://publicradioeast.org/post/appreciating-james-garner-tvs-best-unhero I didn't know, watching Isaac Hayes push James Garner around on <em>The Rockford Files</em>, that I was seeing a special character continue an important television legacy.<p>All I knew, as a devoted fan of Garner's put-upon private eye, was that Jim Rockford seemed like a kind of hero you never saw anywhere else on television.<p>Perpetually strapped for cash and working a case that wasn't likely to change that situation, Rockford was a wrongly imprisoned ex-con who cloaked his heroism in a cynic's quips and world-weary attitude (Hayes was a physically intimidating fellow ex-con who always misp Sun, 20 Jul 2014 20:41:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 46854 at http://publicradioeast.org Appreciating James Garner: TV's Best Unhero Viola Davis Gets Groundbreaking Role As ABC Bets On Diversity http://publicradioeast.org/post/viola-davis-gets-groundbreaking-role-abc-bets-diversity <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNqqjDv6_dU</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbSl-SPyHtg</p><p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOutgc-GG6g</p> Wed, 16 Jul 2014 16:51:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 46520 at http://publicradioeast.org Viola Davis Gets Groundbreaking Role As ABC Bets On Diversity Asking Katherine Heigl The 'Difficult' Question At Press Tour http://publicradioeast.org/post/asking-katherine-heigl-difficult-question-press-tour It may be the toughest task of all at a press tour in Los Angeles packed with TV critics from across the nation: How to ask a celebrity a tough question about her bad reputation without looking like a jerk yourself.<p>That moment surfaced for me Sunday, when trying to ask star Katherine Heigl about longstanding rumors in Hollywood that she and her manager/mother have been difficult to work with across many projects.<p>Heigl was appearing during the TV Critics Association's summer press tour in Beverly Hills, facing a roomful of journalists and TV critics, ready to field questions about playing Mon, 14 Jul 2014 16:56:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 46341 at http://publicradioeast.org Asking Katherine Heigl The 'Difficult' Question At Press Tour Snubs And Successes: 6 Lessons Learned From This Year's Emmy Nominations http://publicradioeast.org/post/snubs-and-successes-6-lessons-learned-years-emmy-nominations There are things you could quibble about in the array of nominations announced today for the 66th Primetime Emmy Awards.<p>No best drama series nomination for CBS' <em>The Good Wife</em>, though several stars got acting nods. No acting nomination for <em>Orphan Black</em> star Tatiana Maslany, though she plays about eight different roles on BBC America's clone-focused adventure drama. No best variety show nod for John Oliver's increasingly stellar <em>Last Week Tonight</em> on HBO. Thu, 10 Jul 2014 23:03:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 46084 at http://publicradioeast.org Snubs And Successes: 6 Lessons Learned From This Year's Emmy Nominations Social Media Meltdowns Highlight The Power Of The Audience http://publicradioeast.org/post/social-media-meltdowns-highlight-power-audience At first glance, Adam Richman and Anthony Cumia might not seem to have much in common.<p>True enough, they are media stars who took a hard fall thanks to untoward comments on social media. Richman, a host on the Travel Channel, saw the debut of his new show delayed indefinitely after an online spat led him to suggest one critic commit suicide.<p>Cumia, half of the infamous Opie & Anthony shock jock radio duo, was dumped by SiriusXM after using the c-word on Twitter to describe a black woman he said punched him. Wed, 09 Jul 2014 16:57:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 45932 at http://publicradioeast.org Social Media Meltdowns Highlight The Power Of The Audience Diane Sawyer's 'World News' Departure Sets Off Big Changes At ABC News http://publicradioeast.org/post/diane-sawyers-world-news-departure-sets-big-changes-abc-news Diane Sawyer will leave her job as anchor of ABC News' flagship program, <em>World New</em>s, during the last week of August, capping a five-year run at the show and kicking off an anchor shuffle at the network.<p><em>Good Morning America </em>co-anchor George Stephanopoulos, who was widely seen as Sawyer's likely successor, won't go to <em>World News</em>. Wed, 25 Jun 2014 17:18:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 44830 at http://publicradioeast.org Diane Sawyer's 'World News' Departure Sets Off Big Changes At ABC News 'Freedom Summer' And 'The Watsons': Powerful TV About A Civil Rights Journey http://publicradioeast.org/post/freedom-summer-and-watsons-powerful-tv-about-civil-rights-journey <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iz0GpAB0Uf0</p> Tue, 24 Jun 2014 20:30:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 44766 at http://publicradioeast.org 'Freedom Summer' And 'The Watsons': Powerful TV About A Civil Rights Journey FX's 'Tyrant' Drowns An Opportunity For Nuance In Stereotypes http://publicradioeast.org/post/fxs-tyrant-drowns-opportunity-nuance-stereotypes <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jMhJW7-HUs</p> Tue, 24 Jun 2014 19:48:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 44759 at http://publicradioeast.org FX's 'Tyrant' Drowns An Opportunity For Nuance In Stereotypes Sputtering On Fumes, 'True Blood' Has Outstayed Its Welcome http://publicradioeast.org/post/sputtering-fumes-true-blood-has-outstayed-its-welcome HBO's <em>True Blood</em>, which returns for its final season Sunday, is a prime example of a TV show that kept going long after it should have ended. It's not alone, though: Other shows have stayed too long at the party, including <em>Dexter</em> and <em>Law & Order: SVU</em>. Why is it that some shows stay on air well after they've run out of creative juice? <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Fri, 20 Jun 2014 20:20:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 44489 at http://publicradioeast.org Hey, Emmy Voters, Stop Ignoring 'Orphan Black' — And Other Suggestions http://publicradioeast.org/post/hey-emmy-voters-stop-ignoring-orphan-black-and-other-suggestions Emmy nominations are a tough time for a TV critic.<p>That's because much of the work involved in choosing the best achievements for television's highest award is done in the nominating process.<p>Tatiana Maslany, the talented Canadian actress who plays a multitude of clones on BBC America's mind-bending sci-fi drama <em>Orphan Black,</em> found that out the hard way. She wasn't even nominated for an Emmy last year, despite nailing the most difficult role in one of TV's most challenging new series.<p>But there's still a chance in 2014. Thu, 19 Jun 2014 22:03:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 44407 at http://publicradioeast.org Hey, Emmy Voters, Stop Ignoring 'Orphan Black' — And Other Suggestions 'Working Stiff TV' — Hey, Meat And Potatoes Are Pretty Tasty http://publicradioeast.org/post/working-stiff-tv-hey-meat-and-potatoes-are-pretty-tasty Even the snobbiest entertainment fan has got to admit it: Television is pretty good these days.<p>So it's easy to get distracted by talk of big-ticket dramas like <em>Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead </em>or <em>Orange Is the New Black</em>. Mon, 09 Jun 2014 21:33:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 43536 at http://publicradioeast.org 'Working Stiff TV' — Hey, Meat And Potatoes Are Pretty Tasty More Scripted TV Shows Included In Top-10 List http://publicradioeast.org/post/more-scripted-tv-shows-included-top-10-list Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>Not sure if you heard or not, but American Idol just crowned a new winner.<p>(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "AMERICAN IDOL")<p>RYAN SEACREST: The winner of "American Idol," season 13, is Caleb Johnson.<p>GREENE: Wow, the drama. You know, not long ago the winner of American Idol was front-page news. But the show recently scored its lowest finale ratings in history when it crowned North Carolina rocker Caleb Johnson as the winner. He is a singer many people have never heard of. Mon, 09 Jun 2014 09:23:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 43467 at http://publicradioeast.org New Faces Keep 'Orange Is The New Black' Humming In A New Season http://publicradioeast.org/post/new-faces-keep-orange-new-black-humming-new-season <em>Orange is the New Black</em> has always been a bit of a head fake.<p>Creator Jenji Kohan has admitted she uses the story of WASPy prison inmate Piper Chapman to draw TV audiences into stories about the types of women who rarely take centerstage in more mainstream fare: a transgender woman, an older Russian woman, poor and undereducated black and Hispanic women and the mentally ill.<p>That process continues to wonderful effect in the show's second season, as we learn more about the history behind a wonderful collection of characters stuffed into a federal women's prison. Sat, 07 Jun 2014 09:41:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 43380 at http://publicradioeast.org New Faces Keep 'Orange Is The New Black' Humming In A New Season 'Mad Men' Pauses At The Half-Season With A Song And Dance http://publicradioeast.org/post/mad-men-pauses-half-season-song-and-dance A death, a divorce, a song and dance number and a sale; must be the end of another <em>Mad Men</em> season.<p>Creator Matt Weiner has a reputation for ending seasons on a melodramatic note. Tue, 27 May 2014 15:03:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 42423 at http://publicradioeast.org 'Mad Men' Pauses At The Half-Season With A Song And Dance A Painful But Critical Reminder From 'The Normal Heart' http://publicradioeast.org/post/painful-critical-reminder-normal-heart Every so often, storytellers land on the same idea close enough to the same time that it rattles the zeitgeist like an earthquake.<p>That's how it felt, sifting through the well-crafted, emotionally exhausting scenes that fill HBO's version of <em>The Normal Heart</em>. Fri, 23 May 2014 15:50:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 42153 at http://publicradioeast.org A Painful But Critical Reminder From 'The Normal Heart' This Fall, TV Looks Much More Diverse: Now Don't Screw It Up http://publicradioeast.org/post/fall-tv-looks-much-more-diverse-now-dont-screw-it For those of us who have spent time arguing for increased ethnic and cultural diversity on television, the last seven days have felt like a fantasy fever dream.<p>This week, the big broadcast networks announced their schedules for the 2014-15 TV season during the industry's "upfront" presentations to advertisers. And there are 10 new series featuring non-white characters and/or show creators – numbers we haven't seen since the days when everybody was trying to clone <em>The Cosby Show</em>.<p>But don't think this change is about altruism or fairness. Fri, 16 May 2014 17:13:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 41551 at http://publicradioeast.org This Fall, TV Looks Much More Diverse: Now Don't Screw It Up How Funny Or Die Makes Room For What Works http://publicradioeast.org/post/how-funny-or-die-makes-room-what-works When I showed up at Funny or Die's West Hollywood headquarters earlier this year, staffers weren't hanging out with Will Ferrell or taping a cool new video with the president.<p>They were kicking around a ball.<p>"The Internet went out for 10 minutes, so we were playing soccer," said one young staffer, nudging around a ball in a set of offices that looked more like the home base of a Silicon Valley startup than a comedy incubator.<p>It was just growing pains; at the time, the company was completing its third move in four years.<p>Funny or Die recently celebrated its seventh birthday. Wed, 14 May 2014 07:42:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 41308 at http://publicradioeast.org How Funny Or Die Makes Room For What Works Louis C.K. Takes On TV Hypocrisy, Aiming Scrutiny Back At Himself http://publicradioeast.org/post/louis-ck-takes-tv-hypocrisy-aiming-scrutiny-back-himself He's known as an astute comic observer with an unerring ability to skewer the most hypocritical moments of modern life. But it turns out Louis C.K. can also be a surprising example of TV's double standard when it comes to men, women and weight. He complains about his tubby body in part of his standup act. But on his TV show, his love interests are often beautiful, thin actresses like Parker Posey and Yvonne Strahovski.<p>Monday's episode of his FX series, <em>Louie</em>, puts all that hypocrisy on the line. Mon, 12 May 2014 20:02:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 41193 at http://publicradioeast.org Louis C.K. Takes On TV Hypocrisy, Aiming Scrutiny Back At Himself 4 Lessons From The Networks' Report Cards http://publicradioeast.org/post/four-lessons-networks-report-cards It's rubber meets the road time in TV land.<p>Today begins the week in which the nation's big broadcast networks officially unveil their new schedules for the 2014-15 TV season to New York's advertising community – and by extension, the world.<p>It's called the "upfronts"; named for the practice of trying to sell ad time on shiny new TV ideas before they even begin airing to audiences. Mon, 12 May 2014 17:33:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 41169 at http://publicradioeast.org 4 Lessons From The Networks' Report Cards Breaking Things Up: 'Senior Black Correspondent' Gets Colbert Slot http://publicradioeast.org/post/senior-black-correspondent-named-successor-colbert It's not often the gods of TV hand you almost exactly what you ask for.<p>So it's time to praise Comedy Central for trying something different in late night, handing Stephen Colbert's time slot to the guy who plays <em>The Daily Show</em>'s "senior black correspondent," Larry Wilmore.<p>Not only did they break up the long line of white guy hosts in late night TV with this hire, they did it with a show that seems likely to talk a lot about race, gender and social issues. Sat, 10 May 2014 14:29:00 +0000 Eric Deggans 41058 at http://publicradioeast.org Breaking Things Up: 'Senior Black Correspondent' Gets Colbert Slot